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Donald McWhinnie

Donald McWhinnie was a renowned TV, Film and Stage Director. He was responsible for bringing Sam Beckett and Harold Pinter to the Radio and was the only director that Sam Beckett trusted to work with. He was also a very talented pianist, who managed to continue to play even though he could only use the thumb, index and forefinger on his left hand, due to a large ganglion-type growth on his palm. I remember being quite amazed watching (and listening to) him play, stunned at how good he was, like Django Reinhardt was to the guitar, Donald was the piano, in my humble opinion anyway.

Before becoming a director Donald worked for the BBC Assistant Head of Sound Drama from 1953, Drama Script Editor 1951-1953, producer Drama Department 1949-1951, and scriptwriter/producer European Division 1945-49 Was nominated for Broadway's 1962 Tony Award as Best Director (Dramatic) for Harold Pinter's "The Caretaker."

He was a great friend of mine and the father of Paul McWhinnie, whose work is also showcased on the Jolly Rocker.

Donald died in 1987 from cancer in the lymph glands. He is still greatly missed and fondly remembered by all of us.

For more information about Donald and a list of the many projects that he was involved in please check his imdb profile here.